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~ The Value of Virtue ~

Such a poignant question … “Who can find a virtuous woman?” Followed by a powerful statement … “for her price is far above rubies.”

The Proverbs 31 woman is a lady that I believe every Christian woman desires to emulate.

A solid definition is always a good starting point when focusing on this passage. “Virtuous” means “Potent – having influence, effective.” “Efficacous – having the power to produce a desired effect.” “Having or exhibiting virtue – A conformity to a standard of right. Morality. Moral excellence. Valor. Merit. Potency, a capability to act.” “Chastity, especially in a woman.”

The Bible states that her price is FAR above rubies. Did you know that a ruby can command the highest price of any colored gemstone, many times breaking auction records? For a “top-color ruby” that’s free of eye-visible inclusions, the price rises even more. Color is the most significant factor affecting a ruby’s value! The finest ruby has a pure vibrant red to slightly purplish red color. Red must be the dominant hue before a stone can be called a ruby. Blood is another symbol of a ruby’s color. (Historically a ruby was compared to the first two drops of blood from a freshly killed pigeon … Leviticus 12:8 - Two pigeons were symbolically used for atonement and cleansing – a burnt offering and a sin offering)

I believe the Lord carefully chose this gem to describe this most amazing lady; We can surely see the importance of having the precious atoning Blood of Jesus Christ upon our lives and letting His sacrifice for our sin’s cleansing to be evident in everything we touch and in everything we do for Him.

Twice in this chapter, we read “the fruit of her hands” (vs. 16 and vs. 31) What fruit is being produced in my life and in your life? What are your inner desires and dreams for your life and your family? What seeds are you planting today in hopes of the bounty of future fruit being produced?

We can learn much from this Lady’s example:

First, SHE PONDERED A PLAN … “She considereth a field” and then SHE PAID A PRICEand buyeth it” … Next, SHE PLANTED A PATCHwith the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard” and then SHE PREPARED FOR PROSPERITYshe girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms… her candle goeth not out by night…she stretcheth out her hand to the poor …all her household are clothed with scarlet (there’s that color red again!) … she maketh fine linen and selleth it … she openeth her mouth with wisdom … She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.”

Now look at the fruit of her hands being blessed – THE PRODUCT OF HER PLANNING and all of her efforts – SHE IS PRAISED AND PROSPERED Strength and honour are her clothing: and she shall rejoice in time to come.” “Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.” A WOMAN THAT FEARS THE LORD – SHE WILL BE PRAISED! “Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.”

So often we want the prosperity and plentiful praise and precious prospects without being willing to put in the day to day WORK involved … or without even any thought or preparation!

There is a price to pay in being an honourable and effective lady – There is a planting in which to partake and preparations to make if we wish to have an influence in this world and in our homes.

Do our lives portray moral excellence? Are we opening our mouths with wisdom and in our tongues have the law of kindness? (It should be against the law for my mouth to say anything unkind.)

There is so very much to learn from this Proverbs 31 Virtuous Woman ~ What fruit is in your hands today? What seeds are you planting and what vines are you cultivating for future fruit?

Lydia L. Riley

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